New Apartment: A poem

Photo of a plant next to a window
Pixabay/Creative Commons

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Repot the plants, sweep the floors

Scrub the dust off the windowsills;

Prune the pothos — now a year old

Brand new when I moved into my last place;

It’s all the same, it’s all completely different

Just stay busy and you won’t have to feel it.


Try to romanticize the sound of footsteps upstairs,

Try to smile when someone’s laugh echoes from the bar next door,

Try to wave out the window when someone walks by and sees me,

Try to sit with loneliness.


It’s easier when it smells like Mom’s cooking.

When the teakettle’s humming,

When the TV’s on, when I’m reading,

When I’m reminded of somewhere I’m not.


Let me reconcile with the romantic —

Try again, try again!


So here I am, here I go, into the fray:

I’m an adventurer in the city Target,

I’m a trailblazer on perfect pavement,

I’m invisible behind my front door,

I’m alone for the first time.


And I realize trying to give meaning to change, to loneliness

It’s trying to barter with the inevitable.


In the meantime

I’ll trim the old branches off the pothos,

Wait for the dust to reveal itself again.


Try again, try again!

Contact Isabelle Ritter at [email protected].